Perhaps this is a post more suited to the spring months but over the last few weeks I have been firmly cemented in a ‘clearing out the clutter’ mode. I am notoriously messy (I like to think it’s because I’m creative rather than lazy) and every so often blitz the whole house on a decluttering mission.
Maybe it’s because there are a few things going on in my life that I feel I have little control over so making sure all my cupboards are in order is my own way of staying in the driving seat.
Anyway, whatever the reason my kitchen cupboards are gleaming and my wardrobe has had a good old clear-out. Here are five ways I’m dealing with the disorder.
Mini tasks in short bursts
My main kitchen cupboard or ‘pantry’ as we like to call it actually took three evenings to sort out. I haven’t gone on a crazy deep-clean mission it’s just that I approached each shelf area as a separate entity. Over three consecutive evenings, while dinner was bubbling away on the hot plate, I got to work on one shelf. Each one only took me about fifteen minutes to sort through, clean down and rearrange. Who’d have thought arranging herbs and spices (and throwing away paprika from 2007) could give such a feeling of fulfilment?
Would I really buy it now?
For a long time I’ve worked on the ‘have I worn it in the last six months’ principle but this doesn’t really work for me given our changeable seasons and there are some items I keep hold of because I love them even if I don’t always have an occasion to wear them to. Instead I’m operating on a ‘would I buy it now?’ policy. I’ve pulled nearly everything out of my wardrobe and asked myself if I would really buy it again now. Now I have about three things left in my closet…
I can’t imagine I’m alone in finding that the majority of stuff that gets crammed in to a charity shop bag were sale purchases only bought because they were reduced.
Finish the task in hand
In my last purge the inevitable bin bags hung around for ages, constantly reminding me there was another job to do. I probably had some form of separation anxiety. There really might be a need to keep hold of those pedal pushers. What would I do if I was invited to a Grease themed fancy dress?
I’m pleased to say I haven’t done the same this time round. All my old wares were whisked away within hours and are now hanging on the rails in a local charity shop rather than heaped in a pile in the spare room.
Leave the baskets and containers in the shop
In the past I’ve gone and bought storage items before I’ve actually made room for them. I was feeling very organised when I ordered a load of kraft magazine files in the Hobbycraft sale recently, only to find that they didn’t fit in my cupboard. Now they’re on the floor of my office cluttering up the space doing exactly what I intended them not to do.
This time round I’ve rearranged and relocated everything before I’ve splashed out on new baskets.
Rethink the cupboard space
I realise I am very lucky to have ample storage space but if I’m honest I don’t use it effectively. My next job is to rethink some of the storage in my dining room. I currently have glasses in three different places. This makes no sense at all and makes it very tricky to track down a tumbler for a G&T (#firstworldproblems). The cupboard under the stairs is basically filled with complete rubbish that we haven’t used for three years whilst our hoover is hanging around without a place to live. Not after this weekend people. Everything will have it’s own little home. (Unless the sun decides to shine again, then I’ll be in the garden obviously).
How do you deal with decluttering? Do you find it therapeutic too? How often do you do it and what are your top tips for clearing the clutter?